SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is a popular and effective way for small local companies to gain visibility with their target audience.
Activities, such as optimizing their Google Business Profiles, building a user-friendly website, and engaging in content strategy are several ways local businesses can improve their ranking on relevant search engines, especially Google.
There are specific SEO strategies that were adopted by many companies in the past and worked to help improve their ranking at that time. However, as Google’s algorithms change, some SEO strategies may not work anymore. SEO strategies that don’t help improve user experience, appear “spammy,” or don’t add value to a website, may count against a page and will end up driving a website’s ranking down instead.
Fortunately, WebPower has the experience, track record, and the expertise in supporting local SEO campaigns of many small businesses. WebPower’s team of experts are also updated on the latest trends in ranking factors critical for small businesses to gain traction on relevant search engines. Our Online Growth Acceleration program is designed to ensure small businesses won’t take actions that will harm their search rankings.
To help small local businesses avoid hurting their rankings by engaging in antiquated SEO strategies, here are six common mistakes many small local companies make in their SEO strategies:
1- Keyword Stuffing
Using too many keywords on a page to the extent that your content will look less appealing to users will hurt your rankings in several ways:
- Keyword stuffing makes your content incoherent or downright unreadable, causing your visitors to leave your site immediately.
- Keyword stuffing will be considered by relevant search engines like Google as being spammy and will penalize your website accordingly.
- This tactic also produces unnatural content, which makes it challenging for search engine crawlers to make sense of the context of your content, thereby negatively impacting your rankings.
Using keywords is essential to ensure that your content is relevant to your niche. However, these keywords should be used in a natural flowing way that blends well with the intention of providing value to your visitors.
2- Ignoring On-Page Optimizations
On-page optimization includes things like meta descriptions, title tags, and header tags. Not optimizing these elements can make it more difficult for search engines to understand what your pages are about.
When formulating meta tags and headers, it is crucial to make them connect with each other. Most importantly, your descriptions should flow well, be understandable by human viewers, and not should not be stuffed with keywords repeatedly.
3- Neglecting Local SEO
Small local businesses engaging in local SEO shouldn’t stop working on their website. Though using localized keywords for your content strategy and on-page optimization is essential, there is a lot more to local SEO than the work you put into improving your website.
For small local businesses, local SEO is critical. Local SEO includes optimizing your Google Business Profile (formerly known as Google My Business), building local citations, and getting customer reviews. For small local businesses, appearing on the first page of map searches is critical. People who happen to visit your city may refer to maps when looking for a local business.
4- Not Optimizing for Mobile
With more people accessing the internet on mobile devices, ensuring your website is mobile-friendly is essential. Failing to do so can hurt your rankings and make it more difficult for users to access your site.
5- Overlooking Link Building
Link building is integral to SEO and involves getting other websites to link back to your site. Not actively building links can make it more difficult for search engines to understand the relevance and authority of your site.
Link building also provides additional opportunities to link your business to users who visit higher-authority websites, especially websites attracting large volumes of visitors looking for the same products you offer.
6- Not Measuring Results
It’s important to track your SEO efforts and measure results over time. Failing to determine which of your strategies worked or didn’t work makes improving your rankings more challenging. Use tools, such as Google Analytics, to make it easier to know what’s working and what’s not.
Takeaways: Focusing on the Experience of Site Visitors Is Still the Most Important Consideration for Local SEO Strategies Search algorithms are becoming more sophisticated and mimic human behavior more than ever. Older SEO strategies, such as heavily using keywords and ignoring essential ranking data, are counterproductive. When engaging in local SEO, it is also crucial to consider the basics of marketing. Your business is all about serving a need for your target market. Making it easier for your human site visitors, rather than search bots to connect with you is essential to your marketing strategy, including local SEO. If you are an owner of a small business that wants to avoid these mistakes, feel free to call us. Our team will gladly help you conduct a trouble-free local SEO campaign through our Online Growth Acceleration program.